Cagliari, Napoli finish goalless
Cagliari held Napoli to a goalless draw at the Sant' Elia stadium today to extend their unbeaten run in Serie A to four games.
The hosts were twice denied by the woodwork in the first half, while Napoli's Mario Santana hit the post in the 33rd minute, but that was as close as the Naples outfit came on a frustrating afternoon. The result lifted Cagliari to third place, one point clear of Napoli after seven games.
The visitors went into the clash hoping to reproduce the form which saw them hold Bayern Munich to a 1-1 draw in the UEFA Champions League in midweek. But Napoli lacked the incisive cutting edge to break down Cagliari's well-organised defence.
Nene provided the first moment of danger in the fourth minute with a 12-yard strike which Napoli goalkeeper Morgan De Sanctis was able to grasp at the second attempt. Shortly after, Cagliari's Michele Canini got his head behind Andrea Cossu's cross and his effort went just wide of the far post.
Cagliari were unlucky not to take the lead midway through the first half. Nene's close-range header from Andrea Cossu's free-kick had De Sanctis beat, but struck the bar.
Napoli had their first chance in the 33rd minute. Santana's left-footed strike from the heart of the area stunned Cagliari goalkeeper Michael Agazzi, but luckily for the hosts, it hit the far post.
The home side were again denied by the woodwork before half-time when Radja Nainggolan's stinging drive from 30 yards rebounded off the bar.
Napoli could have taken the lead four minutes into the second half when Andrea Dossena fed Ezequiel Lavezzi inside the area, but his ten-yard shot went wide.
The visitors continued to surge forward and De Sanctis made a good save to clear Blerim Dzemaili's close-range effort in the 76th minute.
Cagliari could have snatched all three points with a minute remaining, but an unmarked Nene shot wide from six yards with only De Sanctis to beat.